News and Links

News and links of interest posted here regularly…

7/20/2018:  And So the Campaign Begins:  Mayors Implore You to Raise Taxes by 652.8 Million

An emotional appeal from Mayors Doyle and Gamba for the measure conveniently ignores how few the measure will help or how they will actually subsidize rents after they are built in these units.  More on this next week.

7/20/2018:  See?  Its Not Just Industry Folks Who See Flaws in Metro’s 652.8 Million Property Tax Increase

Richard Ellmyer is an outspoken critic of the lack of equity of affordable housing placement throughout the Metro Area.  Coming from a completely different perspective from Affordable Oregon he arrives at the same conclusion:  the measure is a waste of resources.

7/18/2018:  Willamette Week:  Proposed “Wooden Tower” Affordable Housing Project Collapses

The City of Portland was dedicating $5 million in affordable housing funds to a project that was going to cost $500,000+ per unit to build.  This is bad for Portland two ways:  one, spending $5 million on a project with units that cost so much was embarrassing and then the project didn’t even get off the ground, meaning the City is just that much further behind creating affordable options.

7/17/0218:  Portland Tribune Editorial Board Gets It.  Time to Figure it Out Portland

Mayor Wheeler admits there is a problem with how slow the City is and vows to fix it.  To be clear, he said the same thing publicly in 2016 and nothing has changed.

7/17/2018:  Affordable Oregon ED Writes Opinion Piece for the Tribune

There are dozens of reasons why Metro’s 652.8 Million Dollar Property Tax Increase is a bad idea.  Read this for more information

7/12/2018:  City of Portland Purchases Land On Cully for 50 Units with Affordable Housing Bond Money

The City of Portland is purchasing land on Cully for 50 units with affordable housing bond funds.  This is the perfect test case to see how long it takes for the project to make it through their development process.  Clock starts today and if the city actually builds the project out within 24 months and is renting the units it would be a miracle.

7/3/2018:  Metro’s Biggest Affordable Housing Foe

Ugh…A face for Radio.  Take a moment and see what Affordable Oregon Executive Director Joe Keizur is working on.

6/27/2018:  $117,400 per year now qualifies you for affordable housing in San Francisco

This is the precise outcome we are trying to avoid here at Affordable Oregon.  Building new “affordable housing” doesn’t solve the problem.  Its takes a larger effort by all parties.

6/24/2018:  Oregonian:  Metro needs to sweat the small stuff

Understatement of the year.  If you can’t handle the dumb little transactions, how can you be trusted to properly use $652.8 million?

6/10/2018:  Oregonian says what we are saying about the Metro Bond

Unlike the Oregonian, we need more than words to believe Metro is going to make the most out of a $652.8 million dollar property tax increase.

6/7/2018:  Affordable Oregon Releases 2018 Local Government Accountability Project

A first of its kind ranking system of each Portland Metropolitan Area Local Government examines the overall impact of local government fees, charges and timelines on the cost of housing.

6/7/2018:  Portland Tribune Editorial Board not enthusiastic about Metro going into the affordable housing business

Metro is planning a $652 million property tax increase for affordable housing.  The Tribune Ed Board is skeptical o Metro’s ability to pull it off

6/5/2018:  City of Portland Pays $280k per unit, retail, to purchase newly constructed units with Affordable Housing Bond Money, grossly over development cost

Portland bought a brand new 51 unit apartment complex for affordable housing, paying the retail value instead of building units at a much cheaper base price.  This is just one of the ways Portland, and possibly Metro in the near future, will be wasting your affordable housing tax dollars. (Oregon Live)

6/5/2018:  Solar Energy is apparently the solution to affordable housing

This article may be the dumbest thing ever written.  Spend thousands of public money up front for solar energy to lower the cost of utilities for families struggling to afford housing.  Here is a thought:  build cheaper housing and lower government fees first. (Portland Mercury)

5/23/2018:  Reaping what your sow:  Portland residents up in arms about infill should look in the mirror–density means YOUR backyard too.

NIMBY’s throughout Portland are beating Portland City Officials relentlessly up about up-zoning in their neighborhoods.  People, when you don’t let land in for development and promote higher density policies, what did you think would happen?  Oh, that’s right, you didn’t think it would ever affect YOU. (Willamette Week)

4/4/2018:  Portland Housing Bureau, looking for ways to waste $258 million in Affordable Housing Bond Funds, is willing to consider buying a complex to preserve low income housing.

In a low income housing complex, the owner follows the rules, pays tenants moving costs etc. and because that wasn’t enough to discourage redevelopment of the property, the Portland Housing Bureau is willing to consider preserving the place using Affordable Housing Bond Funds to purchase it.  THAT’S NOT CREATING AFFORDABLE HOUSING. (Willamette Week)

4/3/2018:  Homer Williams wants to turn Wapato into a homeless shelter

The Wapato Jail, a shrine to public spending waste, has a new suitor. (Oregonian)

3/30/2018:  NIMBY City Official Using Her Position to Squash Affordable Housing

Portland Historic Landmark Commissioner doesn’t like it when affordability comes to her neighborhood. (Oregonian)

3/29/2018:  Anti-UGB Guest Editorial Shows Ignorance, Absolutism and Extremism 

Here we go again.  As a new round of UGB expansions are considered, the UGB Extremists are back with their tired old arguments. (Affordable Oregon)

3/29/2018:  Hey Buddy, can you spare $90 million?  The City of Portland Can!

Why does the Portland Bureau of Development Services have $90 million in excess fees and charges sitting in an account doing nothing?  They aren’t sure but they are working on it. (Affordable Oregon)

3/24/2018: Oregonian Editorial Calls Out Portland City Council

Oregonian editorial confirms what we already knew:  Portland City Council says one thing and then does another, exacerbating the housing crisis they declared. (Oregonian)

3/22/2018:  Affordable Oregon Mailbag

Once a month, we will share some of the email we are receiving and our responses. (Affordable Oregon)

3/19/2018:  Ugh Portland, Volume 2

Valhalla Custom Homes feels the sting of working with PBOT. (Affordable Oregon)


Never mind, Sherwood City Councilor knows exactly what he is doing and should be ashamed. (Affordable Oregon)

3/16/2018:  Sherwood City Councilor’s Online Poll a Leadership Misstep on Future UGB Expansion

Neophyte Sherwood City Councilor may not have any concept of the damage he is doing to his City. (Affordable Oregon)

3/15/2018:  OUCH!  Nick Fish Gets Thumped by Facts:  Economist Joe Cortright Destroys the Commissioner’s Opinion on Market Rate Housing in Willamette Week Article

This might be the best article of the year.  Cortright succinctly douses Commissioner Fish in housing facts and then lights Fish’s theory on fire.  Awesome. (Willamette Week)

3/9/2018:  UGH Portland:  Episode 1 in an ongoing series

Here we begin the occasional look at why the City of Portland is generally considered the worst City to work with in the Metro Region. (Affordable Oregon)

3/7/2018:  NIMBY’S Win Again in Portland

Despite declaring a housing affordability crisis, the Portland City Council nixes a newly proposed tower that would have added 275 market rate houses because neighbors were unhappy.  Developer has to start all over… (Oregonian)

3/6/2018:  A Supply Side Tool Kit for Cities

An excellent example of tools our cities and counties need to be employing now and in the future. (McKinsey Institute)

3/6/2018:  Classic Example of Portland NIMBY’S slowing the process

“It’s people in towers opposing towers, It’s ‘I got mine, no one else is allowed.'” (Willamette Week)

3/6/2018:  Portland, Seattle and Vancouver Dealing with Housing Crisis

Cities slow to respond and often pay too much for the development of affordable housing (Cascade Magazine)

3/6/2018:  Metro Finally Changing its UGB Process. 

Too bad its three to five years behind the need and won’t have any impact on the issue for at least 36 months from adoption (KOIN)